Here's an original, not to say unusual, approach to the music of Soviet composer Dmitry Shostakovich -- play it like it's the music of Russian composer Sergey Rachmaninov. You wouldn't think it could work. How would the anguished melodies, angular harmonies, nervous rhythms, and ironic tone of the modernist composer sound played like the ardent melodies, lush harmonies, orgasmic rhythms, and passionate tone of the fin de siècle composer? And yet work it does on this 2006 Tudor recording of Shostakovich's Cello Sonata and two Piano Trios played by Moscow's Rachmaninov Trio. This isn't to say that the trio's performance re-makes the younger composer's music in the image of the older composer -- that would be a travesty -- but it is to say that in these performances, Shostakovich's melodies are warmer, his harmonies are richer, his rhythms are more exciting, and his tone is more sensual than any in recent memory. While listeners who love Shostakovich will have sought out the composer's own recordings of the Cello Sonata with Mstislav Rostropovich and the Piano Trio No. 2 with David Oistrakh and Milos Sadlo, listeners who are as yet unfamiliar with these works -- and not all that sure how they feel about modernism -- may find this recordings quite persuasive. Tudor's sound is big and close, but edgy and harsh.
AllMusic Review by James Leonard
|Sonata for cello & piano in D minor, Op. 40|
|Piano Trio No. 2 in E minor, Op. 67|